MEET THE 2016 JUDGING TEAM
ABOUT THE JUDGES
Eileen Davidson is known to millions of television viewers as Ashley Abbott on the number one rated daytime drama series “The Young and the Restless” where she originated the role in 1982, and also as Kristen Blake Dimera on “Days of Our Lives”, originating that role in 1994.
She made television history by portraying five characters simultaneously on “Days of our Lives” in 1997 and 1998.
She had the unique opportunity of acting on both shows simultaneously for two years in 2014 and 2015.
Eileen has been nominated for three Emmy Awards in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in a Daytime Drama series. She won her first Emmy in June of 2014 for playing Kristen Dimera on Days of Our Lives.
Her feature film credits include “Eternity”’ opposite Jon Voight and Armande Asssante, “Easy Wheels” with Paul Le Mat and the horror film cult favorite “House on Sorority Row” and more recently, “Hell and Mr. Fudge” with Mackenzie Astin. Her primetime credits include the lead in Stephen Cannell’s series “Broken Badges” opposite Ernie Hudson and Miguel Ferrer and the T.V. film “Sharing Richard” and other roles.
She has graced the covers and pages of many magazines such as “TV Guide”, “Malibu Times”, “Allure”, “Good Housekeeping”, Andy Warhol’s “Interview”, “Playgirl”, “InStyle” and countless “Soap Opera Digest” covers, and has been chosen as one of television’s most beautiful women several times.
She has written four novels with prolific mystery writer Robert Randisi. Three have been published by Penguin Paperbacks.
She can also currently be seen on “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” on Bravo as herself.
Roy Zafrani is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, editor and educator. He has worked in numerous film productions within the creative industries since 1998, including cinema, theatre and television.
After graduating with a B.Ed in Filmmaking & Media and an MBA, Roy has directed multiple award-winning documentaries, including: "The Other Dreamers", "On the Edge", "On Tiptoes", "Assi Dayan: Embittered", "Until the End Amir" and more.
Roy is the CEO of Magic Productions, an entertainment film production company, and the director and founder of two international film festivals: Top Shorts and Festigious.
Julia Parker is a successful actress, model and television host from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Having modeled in NYC for years for such labels as Catalina Swimwear, Nike and others, Julia moved to Los Angeles where she began a successful acting career that included roles in the Emmy-nominated television film “The Flight that Fought Back,” the series “90210,” “After Lately,” Matthew Perry’s sitcom “Go On,” “Episodes” and others. Her work also includes the newly released film “Grace of God,” the award-winning feature “Ashes,” “Ribbons,” and many others. Her upcoming film projects include “Death Before Dying,” “Marina de Luna” and “Bonds”. Julia is also recognized for her work as the host of a number of infomercials, red carpet events and as correspondent for many entertainment Web sites with her always entertaining celebrity interviews on the red carpet.
Nigel Barber is an American trained actor and voice over artist based in London, England. He has worked in the industry since joining the AEA in the late 70’s, a member of SAG/AFTRA as well as British Equity. Nigel has worked on Stage, in Film, Television and on Radio. Nigel has just completed filming ‘Mad to be Normal’ playing opposite David Tennant. You can see Nigel as 'Head of Nation America' in the new Bond film 'Spectre', he also played the 'Chairman’ in M:I5 'Rogue Nation’ and 'Killian Grun' in ‘Sniper: Ghost Shooter’, staring with Billy Zane and Denis Haysbert, releasing this summer. Nigel was the lead antagonist, ‘Admiral Nathan Black’, in Jeffery Lando's 'Roboshark' for Sony Pictures and appears in the new television series ‘You, Me and the End of the World’ for Sky1/NBC/Working Title. A few of Nigel's most recent films include the Bollywood feature ‘Welcome to Karachi, 'Firequake', 'High Strung’ and 'Lake Placid vs Anaconda’. Nigel also played ‘Carrie’s’ father in Jeff Wayne’s classic ’The War Of the Worlds’ UK arena tour. Nigel appeared in the London West End stage premiers of 'A Hard Rain', 'The Bodyguard-The Musical’, ‘Xanadu’ and as 'James Arthur Ray' in the world premier of 'Hearts On Fire’. Nigel trained at The Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts - Santa Maria, The Actors Workshop - Los Angeles, Stella Adler Academy of Acting and Theatre - Los Angeles. Sal Dano Actors Workshop - Los Angeles. The Actors Centre - London. Nathan Osgood Actors Studio - London.
Kelly Karavites is a NY based award winning Executive Producer with a recent win for Best Feature Film at the Manhattan Film Festival for "Mommy's Box". After a career in financial services and after having served in the United States Army he launched his career in show biz. As an Actor and Comedian, Kelly has appeared Off Broadway, on television and in many diverse indie films. He is the owner of Achilles Heal Films LLC, a unique film company whose goal is to entertain, inform and heal people.
Angie Alexander is an Italian actress. She started acting when she was 14 years old. After being part of the cast of many stage productions from 2002 to 2005, she has been working for the Cinema since 2006. In 2014, she had the great opportunity to play the part of the female protagonist of the short film “Doppia Luce” (in pre-production as a TV series), directed by Laszlo Barbo. This project was awarded the prize for best short film at 23 International Festivals and it was also selected for the 68th Cannes Festival and for the “David di Donatello” award (2015). Thanks to her interpretation in “Doppia Luce,” Angie was awarded the prize for best actress in a leading role at the Top Short Film Festival in 2015. She also received two nominations as best actor in a leading role at the Sanford International Film Festival and at the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival.
Marlom Meirelles has produced and directed several award-winning films, including “The Bricked Girl”, “Among Women”, and “Button Eyes.” Meirelles is the President of Eixo Audiovisual, a Brazilian independent production company that works in multiple sectors, including educational and social projects, movie screenings, book publishing, and film production. Marlom is an international photographer with experience in more than 15 countries, and he is the director of an open-air film festival.
His short film “The Bricked Girl” (A Emparedada da Rua Nova, 2010) won a top multimedia film festival in Brazil and was screened at the Short Film Corner at Cannes. Meirelles also directed Among Women (Entre Mulheres, 2012), a documentary on women’s rights and gender, which won an award for best script. In 2015 he produced and directed the short film “Button Eyes” (Olhos de Botão), a fictional suspense/thriller set in the Brazilian countryside, which has been screened at more than 50 film festivals around the world. Meirelles is currently editing the documentary feature film One Day We Arrived in Japan, an intimate epic spanning 10 years and 10,000 miles in the lives of three migrant families.
Casey Ruggieri is an LA based actress and writer. Graduating with a B.S.A. degree in Cinema and Production, she has written in various formats for the big and small screen including; feature, short, sketch and sitcom. Some of her onscreen credits include "Gone Girl" (Directed by David Fincher), "House of Lies" and "Kroll Show", as well as dozens of national commercials. Casey is very active and passionate about her work with the arts for youth in the non-profit sector. She helped start G.R.O.W.T.H. (girls reaching out and within to heal), an LA based afterschool program working with at-risk teen youth. Currently, she is a head mentor with "Young Storytellers", a nonprofit that works with elementary level students, teaching them the fundamentals of screenwriting and storytelling. She is currently developing a youth non-profit of her own.
Mireya Rivera is an up-and-coming Latina actress based out of Los Angeles. She previously lived in Chicago for several years and spent part of her time doing commercials and modeling. Mireya changed careers and moved to Los Angeles three years ago to pursue acting full time. Since then, she has trained in a variety of areas in the entertainment industry, such as acting on tv and film, voice overs and Improv. She has performed on a few short films and a pilot and is currently writing, producing, directing and editing her first short film that is about a topic very dear to her heart.
David Casademunt Izquierdo studied film direction at Escola Superior de Cinema i Audiovisuals de Catalunya (ESCAC), a Spanish school of cinema in Barcelona, where J. A. Bayona also studied and graduated (The Impossible, A Monster Calls).
David is a writer, producer and director of TV commercials, short films, documentaries and several music videos for Universal Music, EMI Music, SONY, etc.
His documentary feature film, “Rumba Tres, There and Back Again”, won the top awards at the IN-EDIT Beefeater Festival.
In addition, David has won 42 International awards, including Top Shorts 2015 Best of Fest and Best Director awards.
At the moment he is working on his first fiction feature film.
Nami Melumad is an active Los Angeles based film composer. Having worked for Magic Productions Inc., Nami has scored numerous projects including commercials, trailers, animations and documentaries, which have been screened worldwide and won multiple international awards. She studied film scoring at the highly acknowledged Scoring for Motion Pictures and TV program at the University of Southern California (among her teachers were Bruce Broughton, Jack Smalley), and was mentored by composer Thomas Newman. Alongside film scoring, Nami has composed music for theater productions, video games and worked as a symphonic arranger.
Ruben Navarro, born in Malaga, Spain, is an avid filmmaker who is also highly experienced in producing and editing in Television. He is a member of the Television Academy (Emmys). He moved to Los Angeles in 2010, where he directed his first short film, “In Tune with You” (2012). His second short film, “Monsters of the Night” (2015) won 4 awards in 21 Festivals. Ruben's editing work in films has been in nearly 100 Official Selections throughout the world and counting. Currently, Ruben lives in Los Angeles, where he combines both his film projects and his job position as Producer and Editor (Preditor) at the National Broadcast American Network Mundo Max in the On-Air/Promo Department.